Smith Haywood
1926 - 2020
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Chapman Smith Haywood, 94, passed away peacefully on August 2, 2020. Smith was born to Rosebud Smith Haywood and Howard Carl Haywood in Taylor County, Georgia, January 5, 1926. He later moved to Thomaston, GA, which he considered to be his hometown. Smith qualified as a US Naval Cadet flight school candidate when he was only 17 and had to wait a few months before he was allowed to start his training as a fighter pilot. He began ground school before his 18th birthday and later began his pilot's training in the F4U Corsair during WWII. Shortly before receiving his wings, the war was ending and all of the cadets were discharged. Smith never gave up his dream of becoming a pilot, and he later earned his civilian pilot's license with VFR (Visual Flight Rating) and IFR (Instrument Flight Rating) flights. His skills earned him much respect and admiration in the southeast US private pilots' community. After discharge from the Navy, Smith attended and graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting. Immediately upon graduating he married Joyce Eugenia Kersey of Thomaston, GA, on June 12, 1949. They were married for 66 years until Joyce's death in 2015. Smith and Joyce are survived by three daughters, Marsha Robson (Keith), Phyllis Hammack (Jim), and Melinda DeMuch, all of Huntsville, AL; and grandchildren, Scott Hammack (Alexandra) of Portland, Oregon; Catherine Hammack-Aviran (Hila) of Nashville, TN; Ann Elyse DeMuch of Cleveland, Ohio. Their first grandchild, Erin Jackson of San Diego, CA, passed away in April 2020. Smith's only surviving sibling is Dr. H. Carl Haywood of Nashville, TN. Ethelyn Crawford of Greenwood, SC, and Mervin Montgomery of Mason City, IL, preceded him in death. Smith had a long, successful career as a Huntsville independent tire dealer. Before venturing out as owner of Haywood Tire Company in 1964, he was a store manager and "troubleshooter" for failing stores for B.F. Goodrich. His success required his family to relocate to numerous Georgia and Alabama cities. Especially noteworthy is the end-to-end creation, construction, and ongoing management of the Huntsville Executive Airport which Smith and a close friend, Tom Sharp, spearheaded. They acquired FAA funding and gained local support to make the airport a huge success in serving the community and in being a catalyst for growth in the greater Huntsville / Madison County area. The airport terminal was named after Smith to honor his contributions to the airport's success. Also of special note is Smith's involvement in the "Southwest Molester" case in the late 1970s. He was able to identify the make and model, tread, and size of the tires; the type of vehicle; and the number of miles on the tires, information which contributed to the capture of the criminal; his expert testimony at the trial was instrumental in the conviction of the molester. Smith quietly donated his monetary reward to the YMCA. In regard to civic leadership and involvement, Smith was highly active in various Huntsville organizations and charities, including the boards of directors for the YMCA, United Way, the Huntsville - Madison County International Airport, and the Huntsville Executive Airport. He was a long-time member of the Rotary Club, Independent Tire Dealers Association, and Huntsville Chamber of Commerce, and frequent guest speaker for the Chamber's Free Enterprise Education Program at various Huntsville high schools. Smith's had a reputation for his quick wit and sense of humor. He was also highly regarded for his honesty, character, self-discipline, compassion, and integrity. He will be deeply missed. Due to the pandemic and desire to protect the elder family members and immune compromised friends, limited services for Smith's family and close friends will be held graveside at 11:00 am on Friday, August 7, near the southwest corner in Maple Hill Cemetery. In lieu of attendance or flowers, the family requests memorial donations to be made to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital or to Hospice Family Care, 10000 Serenity Lane, Huntsville, AL 35803, Attn: Tammy.

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Published in The Huntsville Times from Aug. 4 to Aug. 5, 2020.
Graveside service
11:00 AM
Maple Hill Cemetery
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3 entries
August 12, 2020
He was a wonderful friend...Ill always remember you....
priscilla lacy
August 12, 2020
Smith Haywood was a beloved uncle and great-uncle to many nieces and nephews. RIP uncle Smith.
Sandra Crawford
August 5, 2020
Our family has such wonderful memories of Uncle Smith and Aunt Joyce. The obit told what an amazing man he was. We will miss him so much.
Charles and Mona Dudley
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